How would you have written the 2nd Amendment?
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Thread: How would you have written the 2nd Amendment?

  1. #1
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    How would you have written the 2nd Amendment?

    I ran into this subject on another forum I frequent and wanted to bring it to USA Carry. Simply put, how would you have written the 2nd Amendment? Personally, I like how the RKBA portion of the Idaho constitution is written. I would have written it that way, with a few changes:

    The people have the right to keep and bear arms, which right shall not be abridged; but this provision shall not prevent passage of legislation providing minimum sentences for crimes committed while in possession of a firearm, nor prevent the passage of legislation providing penalties for the possession of firearms by convicted felons or the mentally ill, nor prevent the passage of any legislation punishing the unlawful use of a firearm. No law shall impose licensure, registration or special taxation on the ownership or possession of firearms or ammunition. Nor shall any law permit the confiscation of firearms, except those actually used in the commission of a felony.

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  3. #2
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    For reference, the original ratified version reads:
    A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
    The version passed by Congress reads:
    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

    If I were going to amplify this, it would read something like:

    A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, cannot operate with impunity in the absence of martial check from the people. The right of the People to keep, bear and carry Arms openly or privately, whether for self-defense, the procurement of game, recreation, or any other rightful purpose, shall not be infringed in any place.
    Silent Running, by Mike and the Mechanics

  4. #3
    Congress shall pass no law restricting the right of the people to keep and bear arms.





    Then there should have been no problem with incorporation and any gun controls would have required Constitutional Amendment. Entirely different history since 1934!
    People don't like to be meddled with. We tell them what to do, what to think, don't run, don't walk. We're in their homes and in their heads and we haven't the right. We're meddlesome.--River Tam

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by NDS View Post
    Congress shall pass no law restricting the right of the people to keep and bear arms.


    Then there should have been no problem with incorporation and any gun controls would have required Constitutional Amendment. Entirely different history since 1934!
    One problem: in law, if you say who cannot do something, then it leaves open the door for everyone else but that entity to do it.

    Mentioning Congress also implies that it only applies at the federal level. The executive branch, judiciary, and all state and local legislatures, executives and courts at all levels will suddenly think that they can impose de facto anti-gun measures. This has unfortunately happened with the First Amendment to the point where it's just getting ridiculous. Congress can't pass any laws "respecting an establishment of religion", but certainly everyone else will get their thumbs in the pie.
    Silent Running, by Mike and the Mechanics

  6. #5
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    toreskha ---- "...a martial check from the people". You do not understand - The Militia - IS THE PEOPLE! You are confusing the Military, a government controlled body of armed personnel, with the Militia (the whole of the People), which is covered by the Second Amendment (the very essence of the Second Amendment!). Also, "keep, bear and carry arms" is redundant; bear and carry have the same meaning in the current Second Amendment. Ain't debate fun though!
    sailor

  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by sailor View Post
    toreskha ---- "...a martial check from the people". You do not understand - The Militia - IS THE PEOPLE! You are confusing the Military, a government controlled body of armed personnel, with the Militia (the whole of the People), which is covered by the Second Amendment (the very essence of the Second Amendment!).
    At the time, the militia was called to support the skeleton of a military we had in place. For most intents and purposes, the militia was a government controlled body of armed personnel.

    It mentions a "well-regulated militia" - a military force kept in check, and then mentions "people" separately.

    Thus, people check the militia.

    Today of course, the militia is the people. Thus today, the militia checks the military.

    Also, "keep, bear and carry arms" is redundant; bear and carry have the same meaning in the current Second Amendment. Ain't debate fun though!
    I know, but I'm willing to go with a little redundancy if it means I could carry freely if this hypothetical 2A revision were to get accepted. :-)
    Silent Running, by Mike and the Mechanics

  8. #7
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    toreskha ---"I ask, sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people... To disarm the people is the best and most effective way to enslave them." (George Mason). "A militia, when properly formed , are in fact the people themselves ... and include all men capable of bearing arms ... To preserve liberty it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms." (Richard Henry Lee). The point being, the militia is The People - the military is not the militia - is not now, and never was. Our nations history is based on the militia, with a great aversion to a standing army - again - the basic reason behind the Second Amendment - to be a counter to the standing army idea. The military and the militia are two seperate and distinct concepts - and never the twain shall meet - I hope!
    sailor

  9. #8
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    "Congress shall make no law which violates the Natural Right of The People to maintain arms suitable for self defense, sport, and defense of Home and Country from enemies of the Constitution, foreign or domestic. Likewise the several States are prohibited from infringing on this Right in any manner whatsoever."
    NRA Life; GOA Life; CCRKBA Life; Trustee, NJCSD; F&AM: 32 & KT
    The Only Answer to a Bad Guy with a Gun - Is a Good Guy with a Gun!
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  10. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by toreskha View Post
    One problem: in law, if you say who cannot do something, then it leaves open the door for everyone else but that entity to do it.

    Mentioning Congress also implies that it only applies at the federal level. The executive branch, judiciary, and all state and local legislatures, executives and courts at all levels will suddenly think that they can impose de facto anti-gun measures. This has unfortunately happened with the First Amendment to the point where it's just getting ridiculous. Congress can't pass any laws "respecting an establishment of religion", but certainly everyone else will get their thumbs in the pie.
    Go look at the wording of the other amendments, then read the rest of my post about incorporation. Had the 2nd been written without reference to the militia, things would have been much simpler.
    People don't like to be meddled with. We tell them what to do, what to think, don't run, don't walk. We're in their homes and in their heads and we haven't the right. We're meddlesome.--River Tam

  11. #10
    I might take words from both the Virginia and Vermont State's Constitutions. But like the US Constitution, it could still leave it open to interpretation.

    That a well regulated militia, composed of the body of the people, trained to arms, is the proper, natural, and safe defense of a free state, therefore, the right of the people to keep and bear arms for the defense of themselves and the State, shall not be infringed; that standing armies, in time of peace, should be avoided as dangerous to liberty; and that in all cases the military should be under strict subordination to, and governed by, the civil power.
    New York State Consolidated Laws, Civil Rights, Article 2-Bill of Rights, Section 4

    S 4. Right to keep and bear arms. A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms cannot be infringed.

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